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Recent years have seen the emergence of wireless sensor network systems that must support high data rate and real time queries of physical environments. This paper proposes Real-Time Query Scheduling (RTQS), a novel approach to conflict-free transmission scheduling for real-time queries in wireless sensor networks. First, the authors show that there is an inherent trade-off between prioritization and throughput in conflict-free query scheduling. They then present three new real-time scheduling algorithms. The non-preemptive query scheduling algorithm achieves high throughput while introducing priority inversions. The preemptive query scheduling algorithm eliminates priority inversion at the cost of reduced throughput. The slack stealing query scheduling algorithm combines the benefits of preemptive and non-preemptive scheduling by improving the throughput while meeting query deadlines.
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